With indie music blending so many different styles, it’s getting harder and harder to find heavier music that isn’t leaning heavily on a sub-genre. While there’s nothing wrong with blending multiple styles, a band really has to nail it if they don’t want to come off gimmicky. After all, I’d be happy with a band that’s good at just one genre. But going the extra mile is the Phoenix Arizona trio known as Wolves Of Winter.
After an interesting full-length demo in 2013, Wolves Of Winter dropped their self-titled debut album in 2016.
Here at 50Thirdand3rd, I generally cover new releases. So why am I covering an album that came out nearly 4 years ago? First off, it completely slipped under my radar. If it weren’t for stumbling across a post from No Slip Records on Facebook, I probably wouldn’t have checked them out. Secondly, the label still has a few copies available on vinyl and it’s really the best way to experience the album. Third, and most importantly, Wolves Of Winter are good. So good in fact, this debut record is an automatic classic!
Combining elements of stoner metal, psych, doom, and even hints of metal, Wolves Of Winter aren’t afraid to experiment. Despite only being a three-piece made up of guitar, bass, and drums, the sounds they achieve are as tall as a mountant and trippy as an LSD-laced cigarette.
Vocalist/guitarist Josh McGee applies layer upon layer of guitars ranging from Tommi Iommi to Nick Oliveri. In the bass department, David Weaver acts almost like a rhythm guitarist without becoming obnoxious. His riffs are tasteful and heavy, keeping the band firmly rooted in the pocket. But with all the discipline and groove-based experimentation, Mike Horn’s drumming is chaotic and larger than life. He takes even the simplest melodies and makes them outlandish with percussion.
The most remarkable thing about Wolves Of Winter is their ability to be progressive without being prog.
With their insatiable chemistry, Wolves Of Winter have crafted a sound as satisfying as it is unique. Even when there’s a wall of noise, the vocal melodies are always presented in a way where you can sing along upon your second playthrough. And there will be multiple playthroughs. While there are no corny hooks or makeshift gimmicks, this album is extremely accessible. With a relatively lean runtime of 33 minutes, and no song going over 5, it never outstays it’s welcome. Each track welcomes you upon returning.
If you’re looking for something in the same zip code of Black Sabbath but a bit more polished and modern like Transylvania Stud, Wolves Of Winter just might be what the doctor ordered. Rush over to No Slip Records and pick up your new favorite record!
To pick up Wolves Of Winter on limited edition vinyl, go to No Slip Records.
To listen and download Wolves Of Winter, go to No Slip Records Bandcamp